in kazakhstan, the world’s largest tent

And we’re not talking about Evgeny Korolev‘s pants. The draw ceremony for weekend’s Davis Cup World Group Play-off tie between Kazakhstan and Switzerland was held at the Norman Foster-designed Khan Shatyr Entertainment Center in Astana. The structure, which opened this past July, is the world’s largest tent. (Read: HuffPo’s write-up.) The matches will be played in the National Tennis Center, also located in that city.

Draw: See the country line-ups here. (Marco Chiudinelli is playing!)

(photo by Sergei Kivrin via daviscup.org)

practice makes perfect: marco chiudinelli

Swiss Marco Chiudinelli was practicing on the grounds of the USTABJKNTC yesterday (right next to the 3rd round qualifying match between Laura Robson and Nuria Llagostera Vives — Robson lost in three sets, btw).

And in the main draw of the 2010 US Open, Marco will play wildcard Jack Sock in the first round and we expect him to go out to 18th seed John Isner in the second. (Draw: Men’s Singles)

chiudinelli: hum or yum?

The third best Swiss ATPer, Marco Chiudinelli, made it through qualifying at this week’s Rakuten Japan Open and beat Dudi Sela 4-6, 6-1, 6-4. He’s had momentum as of late, making it to the third round of the U.S. Open and the quarters of last week’s Thailand Open. Unfortunately, he lost his only rubber at the World Group 2009 Davis Cup Playoff tie against Italy (his doubles match with Wawrinka against Starace and Bolelli). Still, Switzerland won it 3-2.

Looking ahead: The Rakuten Japan Open counts Del Potro, Simon, Tsonga, and Monfils as its top seeds. MC next plays Monfils. The draw’s here (pdf).

And now to the important stuff:

a) Marco’s outfitted with clothes from HI-PRO’s Black and White Collection. HI-PRO is a sports marketing company founded by Ivo Heuberger — a former pro and one of Martina Hingis‘s former flames.

b) I was once told I like really bland guys (and I sort of believe them. Exhibit A), but I’m thinking my new fascination is Chiudi is the real deal. Take a look at the pics after the cut and help me out?

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